i planted leeks in my winter garden because i read they were easy to grow in the winter, not because i really loved leeks. after harvesting them and trying out new ways to eat them i can tell you that i love them now. first i have to say that having a winter garden has been really amazing. there were a few days where i found myself at home with a sick child and no veggies to make for dinner. i would worry a bit and then remember the garden outside. of course a winter garden isn't like a spring and summer garden where you can eat from it everyday. things just don't grow that quickly in the winter, at least not where i live. the best example of this was realizing i had on hand all of the ingredients to make chicken and leek pasties, with a side of chard. of course gigi was sick and i don't have any photos... it was a River Cottage recipe, easy and delicious.
when i pulled my winter garden to make way for my spring garden, i found myself with an abundance of leeks and had to try out a recipe for braised leeks from the fantastic new book Grow Cook Eat by Willi Galloway. i checked it out from the library and have put it on my hope-to-own list. she has a lovely blog too.
saute the leeks in some butter for a few minutes, add some chicken broth and white wine and reduce. then sprinkle with parmesan and slide it under the broiler just until the cheese melts. really delicious and rich.
i also had a few cabbages in my garden, but i planted them too late in the fall and they didn't really produce good heads. i did manage to get a tiny tender head from each one, though.
i sauteed leeks and cabbage together. it was so fresh and really good with the pot roast we had that night. i just used up the last of the winter leeks from my garden and i'm really wishing i had used some to make potato leek soup. you see, it's march 1st today and i woke up to snow on the ground! that's pretty strange for my part of the world. according to my planting calendar i should be sowing beets, carrots and radishes today. hmmm... so glad we put up our tunnel cloches! i checked on them on monday and the spinach and lettuce have sprouted. despite having the tunnels, i think i'll wait for a sunny day to do my next round of seed sowing.